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Hollywood Digest

By PAT NASON, UPI Hollywood Reporter   |   April 18, 2003 at 3:41 PM   |   Comments

BOX-OFFICE PREVIEW

Action-comedy, hip-hop comedy, an adaptation from popular juvenile literature, old folkies and a Latina-based comedy are playing in U.S. theaters this weekend.

Chow Yun-Fat and Seann William Scott star in "Bulletproof Monk," the latest in a growing list of buddy-action pictures to pair an Asian martial arts star with an American comic lead.

"Malibu's Most Wanted" features Jamie Kennedy, in a movie based on his TV comedy character of B-Rad -- a white, upscale hip-hop dude. The cast includes Anthony Anderson, Taye Diggs, Ryan O'Neal and Snoop Dogg.

Young readers have been anticipating "Holes" -- based on the award-winning book of the same name by Louis Sachar. With grownups Sigourney Weaver and Jon Voight joining the mostly adolescent cast, the movie may show relatively wide demographic appeal.

Christopher Guest, Eugene Levy, Michael McKean, and Harry Shearer show up in "A Mighty Wind" -- a comedy about aging folk musicians who gather for a folk revival. It's shot in the same improvisational, faux documentary style as director Guest's "Waiting for Guffman" and "Best in Show."

"Chasing Papi" is a comedy about three women who learn that they are all romantically involved with the same guy.

Last week's top box-office attraction, "Anger Management," is expected to contend for the top spot again this weekend.


SINGERS IN SICK BAY

Luther Vandross is recovering from a stroke in New York, and Bobby Short is getting over an undiagnosed illness in Los Angeles.

Vandross suffered the stroke Wednesday, according to a statement released by his business manager, Carmen Romano.

"He is under medical care and his family and friends are hopeful for a speedy recovery," said Romano.

Vandross won Grammy Awards for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance for the track "Your Secret Love" (1996), the album "Power of Love" (1991) and the single "Here and Now" (1990). The "Power of Love" single also won a Best R&B Song Grammy for songwriters Marcus Miller & Teddy Vann.

Short -- the legendary cabaret singer -- was hospitalized at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Thursday after fainting during a shopping trip in Beverly Hills. Daily Variety reported that Short, 76, would undergo tests for several days. Short is scheduled to open his 35th consecutive season at New York's Hotel Carlyle on May 6.


HONORS FOR SUSAN SARANDON

The Film Society of Lincoln Center has announced that it will honor Susan Sarandon at its 2003 Gala Tribute on May 5 in New York.

Previous honorees include Sean Connery, Francis Ford Coppola, Clint Eastwood, Jane Fonda, Mike Nichols and Martin Scorsese. The event will feature clips from Sarandon's film career and onstage appearances by actors and directors with whom she has worked -- including David Bowie, Geena Davis, Jonathan Demme, Paul Schrader, John Turturro and Sarandon's partner, Tim Robbins.

Sarandon has been nominated five times for the Best Actress Oscar, winning in 1995 for "Dead Man Walking." Her other nominations were for "Atlantic City" (1981), "Thelma & Louise" (1991), Lorenzo's Oil" (1992) and "The Client" (1994).

Sarandon made headlines last week when the baseball Hall of Fame canceled a 15th anniversary celebration of her 1988 comedy "Bull Durham," out of concern that she and Robbins would use the occasion to make political statements.


CASTING NOTES

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Charles S. Dutton will join Halle Berry in the cast of the upcoming supernatural thriller "Gothika."

Dutton, the director of the upcoming Meg Ryan movie "Against the Ropes," will play Berry's husband. "Gothika" features Berry as a criminal psychologist who mysteriously becomes a patient in her own mental hospital -- and must solve a murder she appears to have committed.

The Reporter also said Friday that Michael Clarke Duncan, Eric Idle and Val Kilmer have joined the voice cast for "Delgo," a computer-animated fantasy-adventure about a young hero who must save a divided world from itself.

© 2003 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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